I recently visited a potential patient who had to put a lot of effort into answering my questions only to get frustrated when the words he wanted wouldn’t come out. For example most of us can easily do addition and subtraction in our heads without breaking a sweat. However for this gentleman those neural pathways had been disrupted, making the task much more difficult, I could see the frustration build in his eyes, his body would tense, and finally he would utter his answer, only to immediately start shaking his head no… it was like “I know this isn’t the answer.. but I don’t know how to find the right one”.
Recent studies have shown that individuals with brain injury have to work their brain harder than someone without a brain injury. More specifically Gary Turner, Ph.D. and Brian Levine, Ph.D., compared executive functioning between brain injured and non-brain injured patients. They found that individuals with brain injury had a significantly higher rate of activity: their brain activity was .004% active while the controls showed .0008% activity conducting the same function.
Click here to read: Brain Injury Patients Cope by Using More of Their Brains